Coaches Corner

Coaches, we thank you greatly for sharing your time and talents with the MLSA! We could not operate such a successful program without you.

 

Here are some valuable coaching drills and resources for your use. We hope to add more materials, so please check back periodically.

 

Featured article:

The Importance of a "Safe Space to Learn" -  Let Them Make Mistakes  

Physical safety is obviously huge and we are all aware of it. This means checking the field for any trash, sharp objects, stones, holes, etc. and goals for good anchorage. Also keeping eye on any weather systems. Observing shinguard policy and heading restrictions are also very important. 

 

But we can't forget the second piece - which is making the practice and game a psychologically safe place to learn as well. The only way this is possible is to be VERY upfront with kids and let them know with your words and actions that the end result of the game, the "product" comes second to the process of learning and of being a respectful, effortful and attendant student of the game. AND...that MISTAKES are OK with you and with the rest of the team, that you just expect everyone to learn from those mistakes. Mistakes are a powerful part of the learning process.  If a player is nervous about consequences or remonstrations from coaches, parents or teammates, the learning process is greatly hampered, and creativity goes out the window. 

 

Our Technical Director (See Board page) is also available to you as a resource, so please leverage his extensive knowledge! For questions like the following and more, he can help you be better prepared and more confident in your coaching:

 - Handling subbing and positional play across the age groups

 - Build out lines U10

 - How to teach basic critical soccer techniques and to recognize the need

 - How to coach large game tactics in a small space

 - Promoting team chemistry and positive culture - CRITICAL

 - U13 - facing the big field for the first time - what it means to your players

 - Easy set plays (corners, directs, indirects, etc.)

 - Communicating with parents - key to a positive and less stressful season 

 - Balancing development and winning

 - Practices - what to do

 - How to give older players the autonomy and contribution opportunities they crave

Licensing/Education

For licensing and education questions, see the following resources: Resources

 

Small Sided Game Resources

For our programs like U9 and the Spring and Fall Development leagues, we set up a smaller field, which is suited better for younger players.

Are you hosting a small sided game? These formats provide great opportunities for players to get more touches on the ball and gain greater technical skills. 

 

Here are some charts to help you set it up:

  • Small Sided Summary
  • Build Out Line
  • Roster Sizes: U9/10 maximum of 12 U11/12 maximum of 16 
  • When the goalkeeper has the ball, either during play (from the opponent) or from a goal kick, the opposing team must move behind the build out line until the ball is put into play Once the opposing team is behind the build out line, the goalkeeper can pass, throw or roll the ball into play (punting is not allowed) 

Clearances
Lebo Cup and Travel Coaches
 
As of January 1, 2015, the rules regarding coaching clearances have changed dramatically. All coaches are now required to adhere to policies at 
PA West Soccer.

 

Using Affinity – A Cheat Sheet

Affinity Soccer is the system used by PA West to handle registrations and scheduling. It tracks you (and your clearances) and your team. It contains everything you need to be an eligible coach, player team for MLSA.

There are four basic functions on Affinity Soccer you need to be aware of as a coach:

1. Entering your players' jersey numbers- this is not required, but comes in handy! You only need to do this once, at the beginning of the season, but it makes you look prepared and it's pretty easy to do. NOTE:  currently, this information resets every season, so you need to redo this at the beginning of both fall and spring.

 

  • Login to PA West Affinity Soccer:  https://pawest.affinitysoccer.com/reg/index.asp
  • Click on My Account along the top right of the page (you may be automatically taken here)
  • On Your Account page, there are tabs in the middle of the page (reading Personal Info, Applications, etc).  Click Teams
  • Find the Team you are interested in in the list and click Team Info
  • Under the player roster, there are buttons. Click on the button titled "Edit Player Team Info"
  • Enter your players' HOME and AWAY jersey numbers
  • Enjoy the rest of your season as you print out Game Day Rosters with numbers automatically on them!

2. Printing a Game Day Roster (or GDR)- bring 2 to each game.  These are only accessible starting Thursday before the week's upcoming game, through game day.

 

  • Login to PA West Affinity Soccer:  https://pawest.affinitysoccer.com/reg/index.asp
  • Click on My Account along the top right of the page (you may be automatically taken here)
  • On Your Account page, there are tabs in the middle of the page (reading Personal Info, Applications, etc). Click Teams
  • There are two tabs on this page under the "Teams" tab you just clicked. Choose the Tournament & Schedule Apps tab
  • Click Schedules/Game Scoring - this will take you to that team’s schedule. 
  • Scroll down to the current week’s game, under the date will be a button “print roster”.
  • Clicking on the “print roster” button will open up the game day roster for this game. 

3. Add a guest player to a roster
 

  • Login to PA West Affinity Soccer:  https://pawest.affinitysoccer.com/reg/index.asp
  • Click on My Account along the top right of the page (you may be automatically taken here)
  • On Your Account page, there are tabs in the middle of the page (reading Personal Info, Applications, etc). Click Teams
  • Click Tournament & Schedule Apps
  • Click View Tourn App
  • Click Player Roster right underneath your team name at the top of the page
  • Under the team roster, click Add Club Pass Player
  • Search for the player
  • Click Add to Roster

4. Viewing schedule/results: